(pathology) A sexually transmitted infection caused by a trichomonad species, especially Trichomonas vaginalis
Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted infection resulting in vaginitis in women. It is marked by a copious, frothy, malodorous discharge and itching in women. However, about 70% of women and men may show no symptoms. Symptoms, if they appear, may occur between the 5th and the 28th day following exposure. Apart from the discharge and itch in the vaginal area, other symptoms include burning with urination, and pain with sex.
Trichomoniasis is caused by trichomonads. One in particular is Trichomonas vaginalis. The latter is a parasitic flagellated protozoan that infects the vagina and urethra of women. In men, it is found in the urethra and the prostate gland. The common mode of transmission is by direct skin-to-skin contact with an infected person (i.e. by genital touching, vaginal intercourse, oral sex, or anal sex). It is one of the most common types of sexually transmitted infections in the world. The presence of this protozoan in women may produce a characteristic strawberry cervix (i.e. a reddish cervix with pinpoint areas of exudation) during diagnostic examination. The appearance is caused by capillary dilation as an inflammatory response.